Liver Fluke in Cattle and Sheep


There are 3 types of disease:

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Liver Fluke in Cattle and Sheep           Acute - sudden death
Sub-Acute - appears beginning of July and gets worse up to November/December - several sheep become suddenly ill, standing about and off their food and if driven refuse to rise their belly becomes swollen and painful and death occurs within 2 - 3 days.
Chronic - Winter/Spring can be seen as a wasting disease which can be confused with a worm infestation. Several sheep stop thriving and when examined they are very thin and often show a swelling under the jaw, mucous membranes of the mouth and eye are anaemic.

Trouble- shooting guide

Severity of Disease      Likely Occurrence      Dosing regime
Acute fascioliasis
Sudden death
Post mortem
  High risk to farm after wet summer    Treat rest immediately.
and every 5 weeks
Consult veterinary surgeon
Sub-acute Fascioliasis
Rapid loss condition /anaemia 
  High to medium risk to farms
After a wet summer season
  Dose at 6-8wk intervals.
Chronic Fascioliasis
Loss condition/swelling
Bottle jaw/poke - anaemia
  Higher risk to farms in drier years or low to medium risk following a wet summer   Dose routinely in
risk September & December
and pre-lambing
Sub-clinical Fascioliasis
No obvious sign - production loss eg. Low lamb %, poor Wool growth
  Can occur on all farms where fluke present   Dose pre-tupping
pre-lambing confirm with









Various drenches both combination and specific are available with different active ingredients - covering different stages of the lifecycle ref. chart.  Care must be taken once fluke has been diagnosed to choose the product carefully and avoid unnecessary use of flukicides.

Combination drenches/injectables:
Allverm – Albendazole – use higher dose to treat adult fluke
Closamectin – Ivermectin plus Clorsoluron – injectable and pour on (for cattle)
Combinex – Levamisole and Triclabendazole does all 3 stages of fluke
Cydectin Triclamox -  Moxidectin plus Triclabendazole – all 3 stages
Fasimec duo – Ivermectin plus Triclabendazole – all 3 stages
Ivomec Super Injection  – Ivermectin plus Clorsoluron – adult fluke
Supaverm – Mebendazole and Closantel does immature and adult fluke as well as worms
Specific flukicides:
Fasinex – Triclabendazole specific flukicide that does all 3 stages
Trodax – 34% Nitroxynil

Liver Fluke Graph        

The significance of life-cycle stage of liver fluke is in the choice of flukicide. Some only kill adults, others will kill late-immature and adult fluke (e.g. closantel, nitroxynil or clorsulon), and one (triclabendazole) kills adult, late- and early-immature stages of the life cycle (see graphic).

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